Populism

Essay | William Davies on populism and the limits of neoliberalism

Essay | William Davies on populism and the limits of neoliberalism

Coinciding with the release of a revised edition of The Limits of Neoliberalism: Authority, Sovereignty and the Logic of Competition, previously reviewed on LSE Review of Books in 2015, William Davies argues that the recent surge in ‘populism’ must be understood in relation to the structures of political, cultural and moral economy, in particular the inability […]

A personality cult that plays on popular fears: how Erdoğan won the Turkish referendum

A personality cult that plays on popular fears: how Erdoğan won the Turkish referendum

Turkey has narrowly voted to approve a set of reforms that will place more power in the hands of President Tayip Recep Erdoğan, giving him the ability to appoint judges, abolish the office of prime minister and curtail the role of parliament. Tahir Abbas explains how the febrile atmosphere of the past two years – […]

To fend off populism, we must stop believing in the will of the People

To fend off populism, we must stop believing in the will of the People

Populists rely on an idea of the people as a single, united force. Unfortunately, argues Luke Temple, traditional conceptions of democracy itself depend on a very similar notion. Unity and concordance is prized. This makes it difficult to challenge the underlying basis of populists’ arguments. But there is another way of understanding democracy – as […]

A prison of our own design: divided democracy in the age of social media

A prison of our own design: divided democracy in the age of social media

Social media companies such as Facebook can sort us ever more efficiently into groups of the like-minded, creating echo chambers that amplify our views, writes Cass R Sunstein in an edited extract from #Republic: Divided Democracy in the Age of Social Media. It’s no accident that on some occasions, people of different political views cannot […]

Book review | Why the UK Voted for Brexit: David Cameron’s Great Miscalculation

Book review | Why the UK Voted for Brexit: David Cameron’s Great Miscalculation

In Why the UK Voted for Brexit: David Cameron’s Great Miscalculation, Andrew Glencross offers an analysis of Brexit. While the pace of developments since the book’s publication inevitably makes some of its observations prematurely obsolete, this remains an important and historically sensitive account of this momentous event in the domestic and international political landscape, writes Chris Moreh.  […]

If you believe Brexit is a mistake, you have a democratic duty to oppose it

If you believe Brexit is a mistake, you have a democratic duty to oppose it

Is there a duty to implement the EU referendum result? Not if you believe it to be a profound mistake, argues Albert Weale. We cannot sensibly and intelligibly use the language of ‘the will of the people’ in respect of the referendum result. It is not simply a device for the registering of the preferences of […]

Lyin’, crooked, loser: how negative affective language influences people’s votes

Lyin’, crooked, loser: how negative affective language influences people’s votes

With his frequent characterisations of his opponents as “lyin’” or “crooked”, Donald Trump’s use of language during his 2016 presidential election campaign was a departure from previous contests. In new research, Stephen M. Utych examines the effects of this sort of emotional, negative language on political decision-making. Through experimental studies, he finds that when such […]

Geert Wilders isn’t turning people against immigration – he attracts those who already opposed it

Geert Wilders isn’t turning people against immigration – he attracts those who already opposed it

The key story in the 2017 Dutch election campaign so far has been the high levels of support for Geert Wilders’ PVV in opinion polls. But what explains the PVV’s ability to attract voters? James Dennison, Andrew Geddes and Teresa Talò argue that although Wilders’ success is frequently linked to hardening views on immigration, attitudes toward immigration […]

A right-wing populist party founded by economists: the strange case of Germany’s AfD

A right-wing populist party founded by economists: the strange case of Germany’s AfD

Alternative für Deutschland started life as a movement of economists who were opposed to the euro. Four years later and two years after they quit, it is a fully-fledged populist party. Simon Franzmann traces how the AfD acquired credibility by vaunting its economic expertise, before switching to more traditionally populist themes.  Similar PostsBook review | […]

Book review | Age of Anger: A History of the Present, by Pankaj Mishra

Book review | Age of Anger: A History of the Present, by Pankaj Mishra

How can we explain the apparent rise in hatred in societies around the world? In Age of Anger: A History of the Present, Pankaj Mishra offers a take on our current predicament by tracing increased disaffection, disappointment and disillusionment back through to the eighteenth century. Packed with references drawn from various disciplines and eras, this is […]

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